It takes about 50 milliseconds (that’s 0.05 seconds) for users to form an opinion about your website that determines whether they like your site or not, whether they’ll stay or leave.
So what do you need to do to keep them there? And what exactly are they looking at while judging your website? A recent study, by Missouri University of Science and Technology, tracked the eye movement of participants to determine what components of the website they spent the most time analyzing. The results found the top 5 areas that participants spent studying on the given websites:
- Navigation menus
- Search box
- Links to social media
- Primary images
Meaning these 5 elements listed above are essential components of your website. Additionally, these are the 5 elements viewers judge in order to determine if a website is reputable and worthy of their time and/or money. So what are some ways to make a great first impression?
1. Introductory Video
Videos mean less reading and this can be an attractive option as some users prefer visuals as opposed to text. It is also a great way to introduce your product or even your company stating what your competitive advantages are, and what makes you stand apart from the rest. Did you know, video helps persuade 73% of people to buy a product or service. So what’s a good length for your video? It depends on the type of video featured on your webpage, but overall, the shorter the better.
Here are a list of suggested video times from The Next Web:
- Creative Commercials: 15-59 seconds
- Crowdfunding: 2.5 minutes
- Testimonials: 1-2 minutes
- Tutorials: 45-90 seconds
As you can see from the graph above, as video length increases, engagement decreases significantly. So the faster you get to your point, the better chance you have of keeping viewers engaged. Less is more, if you will.
2. Value Proposition Statement
According to Investopedia, a value proposition should be a clear statement that explains how a product solves a pain point, communicates the specifics of its added benefit, and states the reason why it’s better than similar products on the market.
In simple terms, what do you do and why do you do it better than anyone else. In a world filled with competitors all easily found at the click of a button it is important to differentiate yourself. Fore more information, visit the 7 Proven Templates for Writing Value Propositions That Work by Tor Grønsund. Below is the most popularized template today.
Use your website as a place to give suggestions to make the consumers’ life easier or more interesting. For example, travel agencies often offer inspiration on destinations to travel to, food brand websites offer suggested pairings and online retailers such as Amazon display products other shoppers have shown interest in. In addition to suggestions, offering inspiration also comes in the form of photography. By showing what “could be” if they purchased your product or service.
4. Relatable Language
It is important to always have a strong defined target audience. Not only should your messaging reflect this, if you choose to go down the advertising route, your website should also reflect this. Consumers who relate more to a brand will be more inclined to become a customer. But what if you want to reach everyone? It’s simply not possible to reach every person of every age, gender, demographic, etc. Therefore, you must narrow your target audience to a select group.
Focusing on a specific target market will have a stronger impact than messaging aimed at all audiences. Think About:
- Who are they?
- What are they interested in?
- How do they communicate?
- What problem do they have?
- How can I solve this problem?
- What drives them to purchase the product or service?
This is the basis for creating a website tailored to a specific audience.
Consumers focus most of their time studying your logo, navigation menus, search box, links to social media and images. Therefore, make sure these components exist within your webpage. Websites are often the first impression your potential customers have of your brand.
Make sure you give a great first impression by implementing introductory videos, creating a visible value proposition statement and offering inspiration through suggestions or photography.
Lastly, in order to be more relatable, speak directly to your target audience through the messaging on your webpage. You will be more successful by narrowing your target audience, than trying to reach everyone.